Weekend/Late Night Movies

Back in days of yore (the 1970s) we didn't have dvds, video tapes, and most of us didn't have cable television or satellite. Instead, you depended on the networks and your local tv station for older movies. Back in those days, the local stations generally bought syndicated packages, including movie packages. They were generally shown on the weekends, during non-network programming periods or late at night, after the news and network talk shows. Some stations had afternoon movies, with syndicated packages like "Dialing for Dollars, where they had chances to win money during the movie break. Tuning in to these programs was often like taking a turn at the roulette wheel; you never new if you would find a winner or a really awful film. I discovered many great films via this method and this list reflects those movies that I saw this way. Many went on to become favorites, others just passed the time. This will be a work in progress as I try to remember all of those films. Any ommission is not a slight against the film; I just didn't see it via this method or just don't remember (senility, don't you know...)
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The Great Race (1965)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A grand adventurous race takes place between the heroic Leslie and the despicable Professor Fate across three continents. (160 mins.)
Director: Blake Edwards
“ I caught this one on a Saturday afternoon and was hooked from the moment I laid eyes on Jack Lemon. The movie is tons of fun, with Lemon hamming it up as Prof. Fate, a melodrama villain, aided by henchman Max (Peter Falk). Tony Curtis is the hero, The Great Leslie; but, I was rooting for Prof. Fate. The film is filled with wonderful slapstick and absurd situations, a great send-up of The Prisoner of Zenda, and filmdom's greatest pie fight If you have never seen it, do so. It's a tad longer than it needs to be, but it is thoroughly entertaining. ” - grendelkhan
The Assassination Bureau (1969)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A woman causes a group of assassins to face their greatest challenge. (110 mins.)
Director: Basil Dearden
“ I saw this one when I was rather young, but had vague memories of it for years. I caught it again, late one night, after I was an adult. The film loosely adapts a Jack London novel, about a group that commits political murder, for a price. Oliver Reed is the young head of the group and Diana Rigg is a journalist (ala Nellie Blye) who challenges him to face his own men. The film has some wonderful character actors and some nice action pieces. A very charming little film. ” - grendelkhan
Irma la Douce (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
In Paris, a former policeman falls in love with a prostitute, and tries to get her out of that life by paying for all of her time. (147 mins.)
Director: Billy Wilder
“ I was also pretty young when I saw this and didn't understand what Shirley McLaine's profession was, but I had a fun time watching the combination of music, slapstick and character work. Lemon and McLaine made a great team and the bartender steals the film, but that's another story. ” - grendelkhan
Cool Hand Luke (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A laid back Southern man is sentenced to two years in a rural prison, but refuses to conform. (126 mins.)
“ I was fascinated by this film and Paul Newman's performance. The opening scenes had me puzzled, as Newman uses a pipe cutter to remove the meters from city parking spots, while drunk. From there he ends up on a chain gang, somewhere in the South. I didn't quite understand why he was there, but I watched intently as his story unfolded. It was only in later years that I came to understand that Luke was rebelling against authority, especially that which justifies its existence with pointless rules. Luke exemplifies the idea that a man's body may be caged but his spirit can never be, if he won't let it. ” - grendelkhan
Mask of the Avenger (1951)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
During the European revolutionary fervor of 1848, Italian Captain Renato Dimorna tries to avenge his father's death, goes against the corrupt local military governor Larocca and prevents an Austrian military invasion. (83 mins.)
Director: Phil Karlson
“ I saw this one late at night, on a trip out to see relatives in Kansas (and boy is that an exciting trip...). The film revolves around a masked man who fights an opressor, with the sword of the Count of Monte Cristo. This confused me for several years, as I thought that Zorro was the Count of Monte Cristo and that the Dumas story was about a masked avenger. I was straightened out a few years later, when I saw the tv movie version of The Mark of Zorro, with Frank Langella. ” - grendelkhan
Fahrenheit 451 (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
In an oppressive future, a fireman whose duty is to destroy all books begins to question his task. (112 mins.)
“ This was another I saw late at night, on a vacation trip. My brother and I watched as fireman sped off on a call, only to see them collect books and burn them. I was totally lost, but watched the rest. My family has always had a great love of books and the Bradbury story has always struck a chord. Truffault is a little confusing with the material,especially with Julie Christie in dual roles, but it's a masterpiece. ” - grendelkhan
Where Eagles Dare (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Allied agents stage a daring raid on a castle where the Nazis are holding an American General prisoner... but that's not all that's really going on. (158 mins.)
Director: Brian G. Hutton
“ I don't remember when I first saw this, and for some years I had it confused with the guns of Navarone. I distinctly remembered the fight on the cable car. Suffice to say, this is one great action-adventure film. Okay, so Burton and Eastwood seem to kill half the German army, without a scratch, but that is what made it fun. Also, it had the typical twists and turns of Alistair Maclane. This more of what I hoped Tarantino was going for, with Inglorius Basterds. ” - grendelkhan
The Guns of Navarone (1961)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A British team is sent to cross occupied Greek territory and destroy the massive German gun emplacement that commands a key sea channel. (158 mins.)
Director: J. Lee Thompson
“ You may notice a lot of war films on this list. I was a sucker for them, as a kid. This is one of the best, in terms of action and suspense (as is befitting of the author). A small team of commandos has to sail to a German held Greek island, scale a cliff, link up with partisans, infiltrate a German bunker/gun emplacement complex, and blow up the guns. No sweat! Along the way we have close calls, injuries, turncoats and every other conceivable monkeywrench thrown into the works. Great, great filmmaking! ” - grendelkhan
The Great Escape (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
Allied prisoners of war plan for several hundred of their number to escape from a German camp during World War II. (172 mins.)
Director: John Sturges
“ This was a no-brainer. I was a big fan of Hogan's Heroes and here we had a group of Allied prisoners digging tunnels to get a huge chunk of the camp out. Even better, it was based on a real event (though somewhat embellished). What really elevates it is the great cast. It's got everything you could ask for, except romance; and, you will be whistling the theme tune for days! ” - grendelkhan
Those Fantastic Flying Fools (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
Phineas T Barnum and friends finance the first flight to the moon but find the task a little above them... (119 mins.)
Director: Don Sharp
“ This was a definite lazy afternoon film. The acting is a bit shaky in segments but the idea is a lot of fun and the scenes with Lionell Jeffries and Terry Thomas are a hoot, especially when they trouble a family to hook up to their gas jets to fuel Thomas' car. I loved the Victorian design of the capsule and the whole development of the explosive (with gert frobe at his comedic best). Loads of fun, derived from Jules Verne. ” - grendelkhan
The Green Berets (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
Col. Mike Kirby picks two teams of crack Green Berets for a mission in South Vietnam. First off is to build and control a camp that is trying to be taken by the enemy the second mission is to kidnap a North Vietnamese General. (142 mins.)
“ Caught this one on a weekend movie. It's straight out of every WW2 movie cliche, transplanted to Vietnam. If you watch it as an adventure yarn, it's pretty darn good. As propaganda, it's on less firm ground. It's about as one-sided a view of Vietnam as you will get, but, there's some good stuff here, if you can separate from the politics. My personal favorites were Jim Hutton as the scrounger and Luke Askew as Provo. I could take or leave The Duke. Mike Henry's death scene is beyond unbelievable (as he takes half of the Viet Cong with him). Don't forget to watch the sun set in the East. ” - grendelkhan
The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (1958)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
When a princess is shrunken by an evil wizard, Sinbad must undertake a quest to an island of monsters to cure her and prevent a war. (88 mins.)
Director: Nathan Juran
“ I first saw this on a weekday afternoon movie, on Dialing for Dollars, on a local station. i was pretty young and when Sinbad is fighting the skeleton, I was scared to death. That thing was creepy! I didn't stick around for the other monsters. I saw it again as an adult and loved the whole thing (though the kid genie was kind of bland). Great adventure that is sorely missing from today's movie screens. ” - grendelkhan
Fitzwilly (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
When Miss Vicki's father dies, she becomes the world's greatest philanthropist. Unfortunately, she is flat broke... (102 mins.)
Director: Delbert Mann
“ This was an early caper film for me. Fitzwilly and the rest of Miss Vicky's servants are running cons and thefts to keep the old gal living the life to which she is accustomed. A fly enters the ointment when Miss Vicky hires a secretary, from outside the safe confines of the servant/thief circle. We watch as the try to circumvent the interloper, run a con for a peripheral colleague and keep the wheels turning. A charming romance ensues and a tale of immense kindness from this wealthy woman that gets us to forgive the trespasses of the staff. It culminates in a hit on Gimbles, at Christmas. Loads of fun, from a great collection of character actors and one of the reasons I had a huge crush on Barbara Feldon. ” - grendelkhan
How to Steal a Million (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Romantic comedy about a woman who must steal a statue from a Paris museum to help conceal her father's art forgeries, and the man who helps her. (123 mins.)
Director: William Wyler
“ Another charming caper film. As a kid, I didn't exactly understand why they were trying to steal a statue from a museum (I missed the opening) but I loved the pairing of Peter O'Toole and Audrey Hepburn and the ingenuity of the caper. As an adult, I appreciate the romance that unfolds, and the character work from the supporting cast. ” - grendelkhan
Sam Whiskey (1969)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
Sam Whiskey is an all-round talent, but when the attractive widow Laura offers him a job, he hesitates: he shall salvage gold bars... (96 mins.)
Director: Arnold Laven
“ This was an interesting little caper, set in the Old West. Angie Dickinson hires Burt Reynolds to help her put gold back into a US Mint! The process is not without its hitches, as you would expect. Reynolds is ably aided by Ossie Davis and a fun time ensues. ” - grendelkhan
Who's Minding the Mint? (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A mint worker accidentally destroys some money and decides to break in and reprint it, but find he has some unwanted partners. (97 mins.)
Director: Howard Morris
“ Another great reverse caper, where Jim Hutton has to replace destroyed money at the US Engraving Office, before an audit. he assembles the world's most unlikely criminal crew (mostly against his own will) and proceeds to break into the facility to print new money. the film is filled with great comedic actors, including Milton Berle, Victor Buono, Joey Bishop, Walter Brennan, Bob Denver, Jack Gallagher, and several more. ” - grendelkhan
Spartacus and the Ten Gladiators (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.0/10 X  
The story of Spartacus and 10 other gladiators who rebelled against the bloody coliseum sports. They... (88 mins.)
Director: Nick Nostro
“ I spent many years trying to figure out the title to this gem, to get it on dvd. The Ten Gladiators appeared in 3 films and were a kind of beefcake Justice league, who fall in with Spartacus. These guys aren't the brightest, but they get the job done. One of the more entertaining of the "sword & sandal" genre. ” - grendelkhan
Killer Force (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
A five-man team of professionals undertake a daring robbery at a diamond mine. (102 mins.)
Director: Val Guest
“ Saw this one on a late movie. Peter Fonda is a security office at a South African diamond mine complex. His boss wants him to root out a smuggling operation, but things go haywire and he finds himself an unwitting accomplice in a heist. The film has several twists and turns and has a decent cast, including Maud Adams, Christopher Lee, Telly Savalas, and OJ Simpson! Rather cynical but fun. ” - grendelkhan
The Silencers (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
In this, the first Matt Helm movie, we see Matt Helm coaxed out of semi-retirement by an attractive ex-partner... (102 mins.)
Director: Phil Karlson
“ This was a great spy film when I was a kid; and, a pretty good spy satire, when I was old enough to get the jokes. Dean Martin is the world's most unlikely spy, with the silliest gadgets; but, he gets the job done. I loved his place, with all of the ridiculous gadgets, especially the bed that dumps the person into a pool. How cool is that? His station wagon was hardly an Aston Martin, but it came with fold down bed and bar. Meanwhile, Stella Stevens was sexy even before I hit puberty! ” - grendelkhan
Murderers' Row (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
Handsome top-secret American agent Matt Helm must recover a laser-weapons inventor who has been kidnapped by arch-villain Julian Wall. (105 mins.)
Director: Henry Levin
“ The second Matt Helm film was almost as good; and, it had a hovercraft! The gadgets get even sillier, but it was still lots of fun. ” - grendelkhan
The Ambushers (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  
Secret agent Matt Helm must battle foreign spies and a rogue nation's exiled ruler in order to recover a hijacked U.S. government experimental flying saucer. (102 mins.)
Director: Henry Levin
“ I liked this one better as a kid; but, even then, it was kind of low. The saucer was pretty cool then. As an adult, it's my least favorite of the series. ” - grendelkhan
The Wrecking Crew (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
The count has stolen enough gold to cause a financial crisis in the world markets so I.C.E. sends in ace spy Matt Helm to stop him... (105 mins.)
Director: Phil Karlson
“ This was a return to form and revolved around a big gold heist (wonder where that idea came from?). All in all, a pretty good action film. ” - grendelkhan
Walking Tall (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Based on the life of Tennessee sheriff Buford Pusser whom almost single-handily cleaned up his small town of crime and corruption, but at a personal cost of his family life and nearly his own life. (125 mins.)
Director: Phil Karlson
“ By far the best of the series, which goes out of its way to turn Buford Pusser into superhero. The reality is a bit more mundane than shown, but the man did not live a quiet life and the tragedy was real. One of the few movies where Joe Don Baker was actually good. ” - grendelkhan
White Lightning (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
An ex con teams up with federal agents to help them with breaking up a moonshine ring. (101 mins.)
Director: Joseph Sargent
“ Can't remember if I saw the whole movie, but I remember seeing a good deal, as a kid. This was back when Burt Reynolds was doing exciting films and before the car chases outweighed the plot. ” - grendelkhan
W.W. and the Dixie Dancekings (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
W. Bright (Burt Reynolds) is a robber with a heart of gold who travels the South knocking off banks and gas stations owned by a corrupt businessman. When he hijacks a car, he meets an aspiring country band, the Dixie Dancekings, led by Dixie (Conny Van Dyke). The two sides eventually take a liking to one another, especially after the Dancekings realize the size of Bright's thefts. Trailed by religious zealot cop Deacon Gore (Art Carney), Bright helps the band make it big while on the run. (91 mins.)
“ Caught this late one night and then didn't see it for years. Pleasant little film, with Burt Reynolds as an a robber who ends up hooked up with a singer and her band. Reynolds falls for the girl and actually tries to help her career, while getting revenge on an oil company. Pleasant, if not spectacular. ” - grendelkhan
Death Race 2000 (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
In a dystopian future, a cross country automobile race requires contestants to run down innocent pedestrians to gain points that are tallied based on each kill's brutality. (80 mins.)
Director: Paul Bartel
“ Loads of fun; like pro wrestling with cars. I first saw it in a heavily sanitized version, but it's more fun uncut. Great satire, though it seems rather dated now. It certainly predicted the future of reality shows, violent sports and societal decay. ” - grendelkhan
First Men in the Moon (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
When a spaceship lands on the moon, it is hailed as a new accomplishment, before it becomes clear that a Victorian party completed the journey in 1899, leading investigators to that mission's last survivor. (103 mins.)
Director: Nathan Juran
“ Decent adaptation of HG Wells, with Lionell Jeffries. ” - grendelkhan
Colossus: The Forbin Project (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Thinking this will prevent war, the US government gives an impenetrable supercomputer total control over launching nuclear missiles. But what the computer does with the power is unimaginable to its creators. (100 mins.)
Director: Joseph Sargent
“ This was pretty scary, even back in the 70s. The idea that a computer could suddenly take over the world and subjugate man still hits the right notes, even before James Cameron ripped it off for Terminator. ” - grendelkhan
Planet of the Apes (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
An astronaut crew crash-lands on a planet in the distant future where intelligent talking apes are the dominant species, and humans are the oppressed and enslaved. (112 mins.)
“ I saw the tv show first (well, a couple of episodes); but the film was so much better, one Saturday afternoon. If it weren't for the title, you be blown away by the reveal of the apes. Very thought-provoking movie and an example of great science fiction. ” - grendelkhan
Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
The sole survivor of an interplanetary rescue mission searches for the only survivor of the previous expedition. He discovers a planet ruled by apes and an underground city run by telepathic humans. (95 mins.)
Director: Ted Post
“ The sequel I caught late one night. It's kind of boring, until Brent discovers the underground city and realizes it's New York. It starts getting great when we see the mutants and the bomb. Then it turns into epic, as the apes find the city. Apocalyptic stuff! ” - grendelkhan
Escape from the Planet of the Apes (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
The world is shocked by the appearance of three talking chimpanzees, who arrived mysteriously in a U.S. spacecraft. They become the toast of society; but one man believes them to be a threat to the human race. (98 mins.)
Director: Don Taylor
“ Saw this on a late movie. It makes a nice wraparound for the series, with Cornelius and Zira travelling back to the past. We learn that history is a cycle (until they monkey with things later). Intriguing stuff and Eric Braden is chilling as the villain, who can easily be seen as a hero. I didn't see the other two films until the age of video. ” - grendelkhan
The Mark of Zorro (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A young aristocrat must masquerade as a fop in order to maintain his secret identity of Zorro as he restores justice to early California. (94 mins.)
“ I first saw this on WGN's Family Classics. I had seen the Frank Langella tv version, from the 70s, but this was so much better. Great duel between Basil Rathbone and Tyrone Power. ” - grendelkhan
The Black Shield of Falworth (1954)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Peasant Myles Falworth is trained for knighthood and is groomed by various nobles to defeat the evil Earl of Alban who's plotting to usurp King Henry IV's throne. (99 mins.)
Director: Rudolph Maté
“ Silly, but fun little romantic adventure, with Tony Curtis as a knight-in-training. His accent lends some unintentional comedy, though he does a good job in the film. ” - grendelkhan
Captain Blood (1935)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
After being wrongly convicted as a traitor, Peter Blood, an English physician, is sent to exile in the British colonies of the Caribbean, where he becomes a pirate. (119 mins.)
Director: Michael Curtiz
“ Nothing brightens up a rainy Saturday or Sunday like an Errol Flynn movie. Caught this on Family Classics. in a string of Flynn films. Great swashbuckling, decent romance, and some nice naval action. ” - grendelkhan
The Sea Hawk (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Geoffrey Thorpe, a buccaneer, is hired by Queen Elizabeth I to nag the Spanish Armada. The Armada is waiting for the attack on England and Thorpe surprises them with attacks on their galleons where he shows his skills on the sword. (127 mins.)
Director: Michael Curtiz
“ Another from Family Classics. Flynn had greatly improved and the film shows it. Flynn has his swash buckled tight and turns this into one of the greatest pirate movies ever. Nice bit of villainy and some decent comic relief from Alan Hale Sr. ” - grendelkhan
The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
When Prince John and the Norman Lords begin oppressing the Saxon masses in King Richard's absence, a Saxon lord fights back as the outlaw leader of a rebel guerrilla army. (102 mins.)
“ A true classic that was meant for Flynn. Every Robin Hood since has paled in comparison. ” - grendelkhan
Northwest Passage (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Langdon Towne and Hunk Marriner join Major Rogers' Rangers as they wipe out an Indian village. They set out for Fort Wentworth, but when they arrive they find no soldiers and none of the supplies they expected. (126 mins.)
Director: King Vidor
“ Saw this after I read the book. It does a decent job, though it's hard to take Robert Young seriously as a woodsman, after years of watching him as Marcus Welby and from Father Knows Best. Spencer Tracy is on odd Rogers; but it works. ” - grendelkhan
The Brass Bottle (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Comedy about the proverbial genie who comes out of a bottle (a table lamp in this instance) to serve his new master... (87 mins.)
Director: Harry Keller
“ Nice little comedy, with Tony Randall and Burl Ives. Randal is a budding architect, who releases a genie from a bottle (Ives). The genie proceeds to create havoc for Randall, but also helps him get together with the right girl and start on the path to success. It would inspire I Dream of Jeanie and also feature Barbara Eden. ” - grendelkhan
Hello Down There (1969)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A marine scientist volunteers to have his family live in a prototype underwater home to prove it's practical. (88 mins.)
“ Tony Randall and Janet Leigh take their kids under the ocean to test Randall's underwater habitat. The kids bring along their band, including singer Richard Dreyfuss. Roddy McDowell, Ken Berry, Jim Backus, and Charlotte Rae round out a fine cast. ” - grendelkhan
It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
The dying words of a thief spark a madcap cross-country rush to find some treasure. (205 mins.)
Director: Stanley Kramer
“ Caught this on a Saturday afternoon. It takes most of an afternoon to get through the gags in this. It's a feast of comedic actors in wild slapstick and character pieces, all in search of a "big W." So many great moments here! ” - grendelkhan
Father Goose (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
During World War II, a man persuaded to live on an isolated island and spot aircraft finds himself responsible for a teacher and several students, all female. (118 mins.)
Director: Ralph Nelson
“ Charming little comedy, with Cary Grant as a man conned into becoming a coastwatcher, who then finds himself stuck with a pack of young girls and their chaperone. Romance ensues (rather rocky) and a friendship grows with the girls. Very well played by all involved. ” - grendelkhan
What Did You Do in the War, Daddy? (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
In World War II, a strategic Italian village agrees to surrender to the Allies only if it's allowed to organize a celebratory festival while giving aerial reconnaissance the false impression of fierce ground fighting. (116 mins.)
Director: Blake Edwards
“ Blake Edwards presents on dandy little war film, about the "liberation" of an Italian town, complete with faked battle and a festival. Chaos ensues (or continues, if you like) when a G-2 major shows up, and then the Germans. Great stuff with Dick Shawn, James Coburn, Aldo Ray, Harry Morgan, and a cast of Italian actors. Morgan is a hoot as the major, who gets lost in the town's catacombs and finds his sanity even more lost. ” - grendelkhan
Operation Petticoat (1959)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
During World War II, a commander finds himself stuck with a decrepit (and pink) submarine, a con man executive officer, and a group of army nurses. (124 mins.)
Director: Blake Edwards
“ Cary Grant and Tony Curtis try to steer a pink submarine through enemy territory, complete with a contingent of nurses on board. Great fun and probably the only time that a submarine sank a truck! ” - grendelkhan
The Ipcress File (1965)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
In London, a counter espionage agent deals with his own bureaucracy while investigating the kidnapping and brainwashing of British scientists. (109 mins.)
Director: Sidney J. Furie
“ This was another late night film. Very intriguing spy film, which showcased the more mundane activities of spies, including all of the paperwork. The film helped make Michael Caine a star. ” - grendelkhan
Funeral in Berlin (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
A British agent is sent to Berlin to receive a Communist defector, but the true situation turns out to be rather more complicated. (102 mins.)
Director: Guy Hamilton
“ Harry Palmer is back and doesn't know who to trust, as he is supposed to get a Soviet Colonel out of East Berlin. Everybody is lying and Palmer has to sort it out. Makes great use of German locales. ” - grendelkhan
Billion Dollar Brain (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A former British spy stumbles into in a plot to overthrow Communism with the help of a supercomputer. But who is working for whom? (111 mins.)
Director: Ken Russell
“ This was a wonky one, with Palmer taking orders from a computer. he finds himself mixed up with a right-wing Texas oil billionaire who wants to start a war with the Soviet Union. Great sets and an amazing climax, with the invasion force of tanker trucks and snowmobiles speeding across a frozen sea. ” - grendelkhan
The Caine Mutiny (1954)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
When a U.S. Naval captain shows signs of mental instability that jeopardizes the ship, the first officer relieves him of command and faces court martial for mutiny. (124 mins.)
Director: Edward Dmytryk
“ I was pretty young when I saw this and didn't totally understand what was going on onboard the ship; but the courtroom scenes stuck with me. ” - grendelkhan
Don't Give Up the Ship (1959)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
John Paul Steckler was the Junior Officer aboard a destroyer when WWII ended. He gets stuck with the... (89 mins.)
Director: Norman Taurog
“ Jerry Lewis gets some naval action and even pokes fun at the Caine Mutiny. Great cast, too! ” - grendelkhan
Who's Minding the Store? (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Norman Phiffier works as a store clerk in a large department store. Clumsy and inept, he can't do anything right. Boy are they in trouble! (90 mins.)
Director: Frank Tashlin
“ More silliness from Jerry Lewis, as his potential mother-in-law tries to sabotage his romance with her daughter (who hasn't told Lewis that she is the heiress to the family business). Lewis is hired at the department store and wreaks havoc in every department. Filled with wonderful character actors and some great slapstick. ” - grendelkhan
The Geisha Boy (1958)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Gilbert Wooley is a second-rate magician who is sent to entertain the troops in the pacific. During his time in Japan he becomes attached to a little orphan boy. (98 mins.)
Director: Frank Tashlin
“ Charming little film, as Jerry befriends a little boy (via a terrible magic act and plenty of accidents) and falls in love with her sister. Sesuye Hayakawa is the boy's grandfather and gets to poke fun at his past films. ” - grendelkhan
Visit to a Small Planet (1960)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
The weirdest alien of the galaxy pays a visit to Earth... (85 mins.)
Director: Norman Taurog
“ Jerry Lewis is an alien visitor in this departure from his normal fare. It ends up being pretty good, if different. ” - grendelkhan
The Bellboy (1960)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
In Miami Beach, the mute bellboy Stanley works at the luxurious Fontainebleau Hotel. In spite of being a serviceable and friendly employee, the clumsy Stanley gets successively into trouble with his mistakes. (72 mins.)
Director: Jerry Lewis
“ Yeah, I saw a lot of Jerry Lewis films on local movie shows. This one has Lewis as a bellboy at the Fountenbleau Hotel in Miami. Filed with tons of silent gags and silliness. ” - grendelkhan
Raid on Rommel (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
In 1942 Libya, a German-speaking British Intelligence officer uses former British POWs, some dressed in German uniforms, to fulfill a secret sabotage mission inside German-captured Tobruk. (99 mins.)
Director: Henry Hathaway
“ Nice little action film, which reuses footage from the film Tobruck. Richard Burton is an intelligence agent, in German uniform, who must link up with a commando team and sabotage the shore battery in Tobruck. However, he only finds one commando and must turn a group of POWs into a strike force, while keeping the mistress of an Italian general quiet. It's entertaining, if not spectacular. ” - grendelkhan
The Crimson Pirate (1952)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Burt Lancaster plays a pirate with a taste for intrigue and acrobatics who involves himself in the goings... (105 mins.)
Director: Robert Siodmak
“ Burt Lancaster serves up a pirate film to rival Errol Flynn. He gets to make use f his circus act and his partner, Nick Cravat. This one is more fun than you can swing a cutlass at. You can also see a young Christopher Lee. ” - grendelkhan
The Flame and the Arrow (1950)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Dardo, a Robin Hood-like figure, and his loyal followers use a Roman ruin in Medieval Lombardy as their headquarters as they conduct an insurgency against their Hessian conquerors. (88 mins.)
“ Burt Lancaster is Robin Hood, by way of William Tell, in the romantic adventure. Virginia Mayo is the love interest as he fights injustice. Nick Cravat is also here, so we get more circus stunts. ” - grendelkhan
The Court Jester (1955)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A hapless carnival performer masquerades as the court jester as part of a plot against an evil ruler who has overthrown the rightful king. (101 mins.)
“ Danny Kaye gets to poke fun at medieval adventure and Angela Landsbury gets to play a princess, rather than someone's mother. Basil Rathbone is along to add the proper villainy. Great fun, with the classic bit about The Chalice from the Palace. ” - grendelkhan
The Inspector General (1949)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
A town's corrupt officials think a fool is actually an investigator in disguise. (102 mins.)
Director: Henry Koster
“ Early Danny Kaye where he is the unwitting stooge in a con on a corrupt village. Kaye's masquerade helps him find some backbone and a bit of love in this pleasing farce. ” - grendelkhan
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A clumsy daydreamer gets caught up in a sinister conspiracy. (110 mins.)
“ Danny Kaye is James Thurber's dreamer, though Hollywood added enemy agents (Boris Karloff) and a pretty heroine (Virginia Mayo). Somehow, I doubt Ben Stiller can live up to this. ” - grendelkhan
First to Fight (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
In WW2, highly decorated Marine Sgt. Jack Connell comes home to the USA from the Pacific War and trains recruits for the army until his fighting spirit prods him to request a return to active duty on the front lines. (92 mins.)
Director: Christian Nyby
“ This was a late-nighter, with Chad Everett as a hero who is the lone survivor of a Japanese attack at Guadacanal. He wins the Medal of Honor and, then, a wife. However, after the death of his close friend, he finds himself hardened and afraid, as he has to lead his unit at Iwo Jima. ” - grendelkhan
Never So Few (1959)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
During WW2, the American O.S.S. mounts covert operations against the Japanese army in the jungles of Burma. (125 mins.)
Director: John Sturges
“ Frank Sinatra and Steve McQueen star in this film, based on the exploits of the SOE and OSS in Burma. Sinatra leads aband of guerillas in the Burmese jungle. They are tasked to attack a Japanese airfield, but soon discover a dark secret about some of their allies. Great action and character moments. ” - grendelkhan
Topkapi (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A conman gets mixed up with a group of thieves who plan to rob an Istanbul museum to retrieve a jeweled dagger. (120 mins.)
Director: Jules Dassin
“ Neat little caper film, with Peter Ustinov recruited into a group that is trying to steal a jewelled dagger from the Topkapi Palace, in Istanbul. The film, along with Riffiffi, helped inspire Mission Impossible. ” - grendelkhan
Father of the Bride (1950)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
The father of a young woman deals with the emotional pain of her getting married, along with the financial and organizational trouble of arranging the wedding. (92 mins.)
“ How can you not love watching Spencer Tracy try to navigate his way through wedding preparations? And was there ever a more beautiful bride than Elizabeth Taylor? This wrote the book on "charming." ” - grendelkhan
Desk Set (1957)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Two extremely strong personalities clash over the computerization of a television network's research department. (103 mins.)
Director: Walter Lang
“ Tracy and Hepburn shepherd this tale of romance and information, as a computer is set against a crack researcher. Delightfully fun. ” - grendelkhan
Adam's Rib (1949)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Domestic and professional tensions mount when a husband and wife work as opposing lawyers in a case involving a woman who shot her husband. (101 mins.)
Director: George Cukor
“ Tracy and Hepburn find themselves on opposite sides of a case, much to our delight. ” - grendelkhan
Kings of the Sun (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
On the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, the Native American tribe of chief Black Eagle clashes with the Mayan tribe of king Balam. (108 mins.)
Director: J. Lee Thompson
“ Saw this one around the same time that Tarzan, lord of the Jungle (the Saturday Morning cartoon) was routinely encountering lost civilizations. This has a group of Mayan (or similar tribe) indians who are forced to flee their city and settled further north, in an area inhabited by a less advanced tribe. They establish a new city but find themselves at odds with Yul Brynner and his people. A reappearance by an old enemy helps unite the two groups. Nice film. ” - grendelkhan
The Double Man (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
In a complex piece of espionage the Russian secret service attempts to kidnap a high ranking officer in the CIA and replace him with a double of its own. (105 mins.)
“ Yul Brynner stars as a CIA man who comes to Austria, after the death of his son. What at first appears to be an accident soon proves something more sinister, as Brynner is pulled into a trap. Very intriguing, though rather slow. Brynner isn't the best person to carry something like this, but he tries. ” - grendelkhan
Sometimes a Great Notion (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
A family of fiercely independent Oregon loggers struggle to keep the family business alive amidst changing times. (114 mins.)
Director: Paul Newman
“ Haphazard film, starring Henry Fonda, as the head of a logging family, who keeps pressing his sons to continue cutting trees, despite a strike from other loggers. The film is best remembered for a tragic accident. ” - grendelkhan
Fantomas (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Criminal mastermind Fantômas, a man of a thousand faces, is unhappy with Fandor, a journalist whose written a fictive interview of him... (100 mins.)
“ I saw this way back, while visiting relatives and spent years after trying to identify the film. Jean Marais stars in the dual role of the journalist Fandor and the villain Fantomas in this film. Fantomas is a supercriminal who seeks to steal a load of jewels from under the nose of Inspector Juve. The chase across the roof of the museum was ascene that stuck with me over the years. Great fun. ” - grendelkhan
The Face of Fu Manchu (1965)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
Grisly strangulations in London alert Nayland Smith of Scotland Yard to the possibility of the fiendish Fu Manchu may not be dead after all... (89 mins.)
Director: Don Sharp
“ The first and best of Christopher Lee's turns as the villain Fu Manchu. This one is aided by Nigel Greene as Nayland Smith. The films are an odd mix of the 1920 and 60s, with old cars and modern clothes (for the women, at least). This one is pretty darn good (inherent racism aside), which the rest of the series could not claim. ” - grendelkhan
Babes in Toyland (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Opposing the evil Barnaby, Ollie Dee and Stanley Dum try and fail to pay-off Mother Peep's mortgage and mislead his attempts to marry Little Bo. Enraged, Barnaby's boogeymen are set on Toyland. (77 mins.)
“ Saw this at my grandparents' house when I was a kid and was too scared to continue after the hero is dumped on an island, surrounded by alligators. I never did see how he got out, until many years later. It's far creepier than the Disney version. ” - grendelkhan
Getting Away from It All (1972 TV Movie)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
Two city couples decide to leave the hectic urban life and retreat to the country, but find that rural living isn't quite what they thought it would be. (74 mins.)
Director: Lee Philips
“ Ok little film about two city couple who move to a seaside village, but find they are ill-equipped to handle life in the country. It's nothing special, and is elevated by a cast far more talented than the script. ” - grendelkhan